Zoom Introduces the Updated F8n Portable Audio Recorder

Zoom has introduced the F8n audio recorder, with new features including Advanced Look-Ahead Hybrid Limiters, AutoMix and mic/line options for both XLR and TRS inputs.

The updated Zoom F8n, still priced at $999, is equipped with Advanced Look-Ahead Hybrid Limiters that provide overload protection. By adding a one millisecond delay, the limiters “look ahead” anticipating clipping before it’s recorded. Limiting is applied to each of the eight channels simultaneously at full resolution, with 10 to 20 dB of headroom.

The new recorder has Zoom AutoMix, smart software that automatically adjusts the levels of the mix to reduce the amount of ambient sound. The F8n also utilizes a Temperature Compensated Crystal Oscillator (TCXO) that generates time code at 0.2 ppm accuracy, enabling rock-solid syncing of audio and video. When powered off, the F8n will maintain up to 0.2 ppm accuracy. Time code I/O is provided on BNC connectors.

The F8n features a super-low noise floor (−127 dBu EIN) and high gain (up to 75 dB). Mic/line levels are selectable for both XLR and TRS inputs. The F8n recorder can record simultaneously to an SD card and a computer via USB. Users can back up files and stream live while recording.

Redundant dual SD card recording can be made simultaneously on two SD/SDHC/SDXC cards, up to 512 GB each. A four-pin Hirose connector allows the use of external 9-18 volt DC battery packs. Power can also be provided by 8 AA batteries or the AD-19 AC adapter included with the device. The F8n can switch power sources at a user-defined voltage level for uninterrupted recording.

The F8n’s dual-channel recording mode allows the creation of safety tracks by doubling up the recordings from inputs 1-4 onto tracks 5-8. Tracks can be controlled independently, allowing users to customize each safety track with different gain and limiting. A pre-record function allows users to capture up to six seconds of audio before hitting the record button.

The F8n’s headphone amplifier and processing has been upgraded. A digital gain boost has been added to minimize ambient bleed, which can cause comb filtering. Signals can be routed to the left and/or right headphone channels, pre- or post-fader. The headphone output can be switched to mono. Alert tones for low battery, recording start/stop or recording errors can be included with headphone monitoring.

The Zoom F8n is available for purchase in early July, 2018.

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